Hazel Freeman mentions how customers were served in her father’s shop

Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 18th July 2011 by Liam Physick

Hazel Freeman talks about her father’s shop. She mentions the display cabinets, the chairs outside each department on which customers would sit waiting to be served, and how staff dealt with customers who requested things that the shop did not sell

Interviewee: Hazel Freeman

Interviewee Gender: Female

Date of Interview: 19th February 2011

Interview Transcript

Jenny: But it’s interesting, the, kind of, the displays that must have happened . . .

Hazel: Oh, yeah.

Jenny: . . . I mean, I can see from the photographs that there was much, sort of, much effort put into showing brands off from the advertising and . . .

Hazel: . . . and there were these beautiful display cabinets. What happened to them all, because there must have been so many in England, I don’t know, but they were beautiful, they’d be beautiful in anybody’s room, and by every department there were chairs . . .

Jenny: Yeah, for people to sit down, yeah?

Hazel: . . . people, like you’re sitting on, yeah. People would sit down and they would be served, as it was called, people would come and show their wares, and help them.

Jenny: Oh, right! So, if I, if you were coming in to, to buy a new kettle, you’d come to the kitchen wares and take a seat, and be shown the . . .

Hazel: Probably, but a particularly, kind of, lingerie, or, or clothing, kind of thing. And I was looking at another old brochure, describing how, how to sell things to customers . . .

Jenny: Oh, yeah.

Hazel: . . .  and this props up in my mind when I go into shops . . .

Jenny: Yeah.

Hazel: . . . they say if a, if a lady comes in, and she’s wearing a skirt, a green skirt, and she would come in and say, “I want a green jumper to match this skirt” and, you, know, you haven’t got any green jumpers, you have to think – this was all written down . . .

Jenny: Yeah.

Hazel: . . . not my idea, you have think, it isn’t a green jumper the lady wants, the lady wants something too lovely for the skirt she’s wearing, and so you must sell her something lovely.

Jenny: Yeah (both laugh). Some shops could learn from that now, couldn’t they?

Hazel: They could learn a great deal! And the other rule was, the customer is always right, it said it didn’t matter if they were wrong, but the customer is always right because, if you’re good to your customer and fair, they will come back, and even if they were wrong, they will say, you know, “This happened, and I said this, and they did this.”

Jenny: Yeah, it’s so true isn’t it?

Hazel: And that was a mantra of his.

Tagged under: freemans, shops, shopping, dispay cabinets, customer service

Categorised under: Shops & Shopping

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